Protect your skin from the sun! Published Nov. 21, 2022 By Maj. Lesli Tristan, 6th Healthcare Operations Squadron dermatologist MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Did you know that Florida is nicknamed “The Sunshine State” and MacDill Air Force Base’s neighbor, St. Petersburg, holds the Guinness World Record for the most consecutive days of sunshine of 768 days? With an abundance of sunshine and no shortage of outdoor activities, sun protection should be a part of everyone’s skincare routine. Not only does sun protection prevent painful sunburns but it also aids in combatting skin cancer, rosacea, melasma, lupus, dark spots and evidence of aging. Have you noticed a new, growing, changing, or bleeding spot on your skin? This could be the beginning of skin cancer. Melanoma is not the only skin cancer on the scene. Basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are much more common than melanoma. These occur in direct response to the amount of sun exposure during your lifetime. Often, they appear as small, pink, scaly areas that do not go away. Are you experiencing dark spots on the face that only get worse with sun exposure? This could be melasma, sunspots, or something more concerning. If you have a concern or are struggling with your skin, you should seek care from your primary care provider or local dermatologist. The MacDill AFB Dermatology Clinic is always happy to see new Tricare beneficiary patients and alleviate any skin concerns. No matter your skin color, sun protection can benefit you and your skin. Look for sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and remember to reapply at least every 90 minutes. Females, look for powder sunscreens for easy, on-the-go reapplication without smudging your makeup. Males, broad-brimmed hats and UPF clothing allow for worry-free fun in the sun. Still unsure of the potential benefits of sunscreen? Check out the photographic evidence of sunscreen and its ability to block ultraviolet rays from the sun. For more information, please contact the MacDill AFB Dermatology Clinic at (813) 827-9372.